The Summer Has Started & So Has My CSA Adventure

I’m excited to be participating in CSA program this summer with a local organic farm in my area! I’ve always wanted to try it, but never actually signed up. This year I took the plunge and picked up my first bag of fresh produce from the farm last Friday. 

I got a variety of beautiful, fresh greens, vegetables and fruit and have planned my meals for the week around the bounty we received this week! 

Here’s what was in my first bag and a sampling of how I incorporated it into my meals for the week! 

Produce

 6 heads of a variety of lettuce (red leaf, green leaf, romaine)

A bag of arugula

A large onion

A bag of scallions

A bunch of bananas

3 oranges

A bag of carrots

A head of cauliflower 

2 baking potatoes

2 zucchini squash

A bunch of celery

I started off the week with a Cesar salad to go with our dinner on Sunday evening; my vegan Cesar salad recipe can be found in the recipe section of this site.  Sunday morning I made a frittata, which I slice into 6 portions, my husband enjoys a slice for breakfast each morning during the week. I filled it with some asparagus, tomato and spinach and added some of the scallions from the share for a little additional flavor. You can find my recipe for a Farm Fresh Frittata in the Main Dish section of the Recipe Archives on the website.

 Monday I made a salad to go with our dinner using the arugula and one of the oranges. I made a fresh ginger-basil dressing. The sweetness of the orange paired perfectly with the bitterness of the arugula and the ginger-basil dressing pulled all the flavors together. 

 OrangeSalad

Ginger-Basil Vinaigrette for Orange Arugula Salad

Ingredients:

3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

Dash of pure garlic powder

1tsp freshly grated ginger 

1 Tbs chopped fresh basil 

 Directions:

In a small bowl whisk together olive oil and vinegar until emulsified. Add dash of garlic powder, ginger and basil and mix. Pour over salad and arugula and gently toss. Top with sliced, peeled oranges. Makes enough for one family size salad.

 Tuesday was “Taco Tuesday” at our house! 

 Tacos

 My recipe for gluten-free taco seasoning can be found in the Recipe section of the website. I used some romaine leaves in place of a traditional flour or corn tortilla. I wanted to have “a little something” to go with the meal, so using the two remaining oranges I made a side salad of orange sections tossed with fresh mint. 

OrangeMintSalad

 Orange Mint Salad

2 oranges 

1 Tbs fresh mint, chopped 

 Directions:

Peel and oranges, divide into sections and half each section and place in a small bowl. Add chopped mint and gently toss. Chill before serving 

 

Wednesday I roasted the cauliflower with turmeric and paprika and made a big salad with the green leaf lettuce and carrots, celery, tomatoes and scallions and a honey-lemon vinaigrette.

TossedSalad

 Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette 

Ingredients: 

2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs fresh squeezed lemon juice

1/2 tsp raw honey

Sea salt & pepper to taste

 Directions: 

Combine olive oil and lemon juice in a small bowl and whisk until emulsified. Add honey and whisk again. Add salt & pepper to taste. Pour over greens and toss to coat. Makes enough for one family size salad.

 

Thursday we had bun-less burgers wrapped in red leaf lettuce, oven baked steak fries using the baking potatoes and a large tossed salad using the rest of the red leaf lettuce, grape tomatoes, carrots and a lemony honey-mustard vinaigrette.

SaladandBurger

 Lemony Honey-Dijon Vinaigrette

Ingredients:

2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs fresh lemon juice

2 tsp Dijon mustard 

1 tsp raw honey

 Combine olive oil, lemon juice & Dijon in a small bowl & whisk to emulsify. Add in honey and whisk again. Pour over a bowl of greens and toss to coat. Makes enough for one family size salad.

 SteakFries1.jpg

SteakFries2.jpg

Oven Baked Steak Fries

Ingredients:

2 large baking potatoes

Extra virgin olive oil for spritzing

Sea salt to taste

 Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment paper. Wash and dry potatoes. Slice each potato in half horizontally. Lay each half on its side and slice in half, slicing each half into steak fries of desired thickness (1/2-1/4″ slices). Place sliced on prepared baking sheet and spritz with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, then take pan out of oven and flip fries over. Bake another 15-20 minutes until golden and desired level of crispness. Makes enough for 3-4 servings. 

 

Friday we had gluten-free/dairy-free turkey meatballs (recipe is in the Recipes section on the website) with zucchini fettuccine and a large green leaf tossed salad. 

Meatballs.jpg

 Zucchini  Fettuccine

Ingredients:

Medium zucchini (estimate 1 per person)

 Directions:

Using a mandolin, slice zucchini horizontally and stack in layers of 4-5 slices. To make fettuccine, slice each stack into horizontally into quarters. Place fettuccine on a paper towel lined, microwave-safe plate. Cover with another paper towel. Microwave 3 minutes. Let fettuccine sit for 1 minute before serving. Top with marinara sauce or sauce of choice.

 

 As I was trying to decide what to do with the onion, a great thought came to me! Oven baked onion rings! What a treat! We enjoyed them with some grilled boneless chicken tenders! 

OnionRings.jpg

Oven Baked Paleo Onion Rings

Ingredients: 

One large onion

1/2 cup of ground flax

1/2 cup of almond flour

1 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp garlic powder

Ground pepper to taste

1 egg, beaten with 2 Tbs water

 Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Get out 2 shallow, rimmed dishes (pie pans work great!). In one dish place egg beaten with water. In the other dish place flax, almond flour, sea salt, garlic powder and ground pepper. 

 Lay onion on its side, with stems horizontal. Cut ends off of onion and peel outer layer to get to the freshest part of the onion. Keeping the onion on its side, cut into 1/2″ slices and separate each slice into individual rings. 

 Working assembly line style, with fork dip each ring into the egg mixture, shake off excess and dip into flax/ almond flour mixture. Place on lined baking dish. Continue unto all rings have been coated. Re-coat until you’re happy with the amount of coating (adjusting to your desired amount of coating; the more coating, the crispier the rings will be!) or until mixtures are used up.

 Bake rings 20-25 minutes, flip and continue baking until onions are soft and coating is crispy. Check after about 10 minutes and add in extra time as needed, ovens vary so cooking times will as well! 

It’s been a great week, full of culinary adventure! It’s fun to try produce that I may not buy on a weekly basis and get creative with ways in which to use it! The summer has just started so my CSA adventure has just kicked off as well! I’ll be excited to see what next week brings and will share all recipes that I enjoyed!

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